This is a return viisit for Miriam who came in summer 2014 to talk about Jerusalem, the setting of her debut novel Neither Here Nor There. Today, she kindly agreed to be on the interview chair so that we can explore a bit more about Miriam, the author!
During your previous visit you gave us an idea of what your debut novel Neither Here Nor There was about. Can you now update us and tell us a little about the sequel I believe you’re currently writing? Are you covering any particular themes in the story?
It was your review that led me to consider a sequel. You wrote about the sister of Esty, the main character in Neither Here Nor There, saying that you didn’t think she’d remain as innocent as Esty. I realised there’s a story there, one in which the main character is Esty’s sister. This won’t be a traditional romance, but rather a story that follows Gila as she changes from a sixteen-year-old feisty but naïve girl to…. I still don’t know what will become of her.
Nancy: I'm glad my review sparked something that led to your sequel, Miriam. I created maps for my Celtic Fervour Series as a result of a comment in a review of Book 1 of the series, so reviews are helpful to an author in many different ways.
Miriam? Are the locations also Jerusalem and London in this second book?
Jerusalem and London will feature in the book. There will also be other locations in Israel. I’m not sure which, but I look forward to exploring them.
That sounds like a great plan. Do you have any other writing works in progress just now?
There are four other novels in various stages of completion (from second draft to vague thought) based on places I’ve visited around the world. One of them involves a character I’ve tried to write about for a long time. I think I’m finding it hard because he’s too similar to me.
|courtesy of Miriam Drori|
You’ve recently been to India on holiday. Can you give my readers a little taste of what you might have visited which would inspire you to include it in a novel?
I did have an idea for a novel set wholly or partly in India. Of the many places we stayed in during our trip, three of them were palaces, in which we were welcomed by the maharaja and the maharani and shown family heirlooms and pictures of the maharaja’s ancestors. A lot of the things I saw on the trip could be included in the novel, but the palaces are what inspired me.
Nancy: That sounds fascinating as is your photo above, taken in a village of the Jagdalpur area of Chhattisgarh, India. Your whole trip sounds quite spectacular.
What are your particular writing targets for 2015?
Your question makes me think I ought to have writing targets! Something like: by the end of 2015, I will have finished this novel, written that novel, completed x short stories and written y blog posts. But so much depends on how things go. Beta readers might make suggestions that take up all my time. Research might take longer than I expect.
Nancy: research sidetracking sounds familair and , for me, it's also my general family life that takes over the day. I suddenly find it's bedtime and no new writing has been achieved!
Miriam Drori was born and brought up in London and now lives with her husband and two of her grown up children in Jerusalem.
With a degree in Maths and following careers in computer programming and technical writing, Miriam has been writing novels and short stories for ten years. Two of her short stories have been published in anthologies and others have been published online. "Neither Here Nor There" published on 17th June, 2014 is her first published novel.
Miriam began writing in order to help raise awareness of social anxiety. Since then, the scope of her writing has widened, but she hasn't lost sight of her original goal.
Love in an exotic setting.
Esty's life was laid out for her from birth. She would marry one of a handful of young men suggested to her and settle down to raise a large family in a tiny space within the closed community of her parents, near to and yet far from the modern world.
But Esty has decided to risk all by escaping while she still can. Will she make it to the other side? Mark, who is struggling with his own life changes, hopes that Esty will find a way through her troubles. He is fast falling in love with her. Separately and together, in Jerusalem and London, Esty and Mark need to overcome many obstacles in their endeavour to achieve their dream.
So much more than a romance. A tale of transformation.
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Thank you for your answers, Miriam. It's great to see you're combatting the stress of being 'out there' as an author. Best wishes with your new writing.